The New England Patriots enter the offseason with a Super Bowl title under their collective belt, but with plenty of questions as it relates to their championship roster. One of the positions that might see the most turnover is wide receiver: while Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman remains under contract, the next three men down the depth chart are all scheduled to become unrestricted free agent in mid-March.
With Chris Hogan, Cordarrelle Patterson and Phillip Dorsett all possible departures, New England might look elsewhere to boost a wide receiver group that has seen plenty of turnover the last two years. Two of the more popular names being brought up in regards to the Patriots and potential interest and fit are Antonio Brown and Odell Beckham Jr. — two of the best wide receivers in football.
While Brown declared his intentions to leave the Pittsburgh Steelers earlier this week, there are no indications that Beckham Jr. will be moved by the New York Giants: the team might want to trim his exorbitant $21 million salary cap hit (although a trade before June 1 would save “only” $5 million while creating $16 million in dead money) but so far nothing has gone beyond the media speculation stage.
Consequently, it is no surprise that the oddsmakers deem the Patriots acquiring Beckham Jr. as rather unlikely. According to BetOnline, the odds of the 26-year old coming to New England are 25/1 — the same as Brown’s: the still-Steeler will reportedly not be dealt to the Patriots if a move will indeed take place. Needless to say that neither of the numbers is a surprise and should serve as a reminder that buying into offseason hype is not always the best thing to do.
The Patriots will invest in the wide receiver position this offseason on way or another, yes, but the bookmakers are onto something: it is highly unlikely that the investments will include acquiring Beckham Jr. and especially Brown.